I had to get this thought down. It's a continuation of the letter. So those lines stuck out from that Copeland song...
"if I have acted ungracefully"
"I hope that you look back before you go, 'cause grace looks back before it starts to leave"
Add this paraphrase from Beth Moore to it (which I would love for you and Sophie to watch with me since you've already seen some of it):
"We never have a Biblical mandate to love blindly. God calls us to KNOW a person, to love with a depth of understanding and insight. Ask God for it!! Something is broken in THEM and US - and God knows what it is! It will awaken compassion within us and remind us of our own brokenness. It will allow us to love like Christ."
So when we think of "Testy" or our "enemies" or those that are a joy to love, we have a duty to love with insight.
None of us will ever love perfectly. We will hurt one another and disappoint one another and perturb one another. I hurt you yesterday morning. I hurt Sophie as well. I have hurt your dad, my little boys, my sister, my friends. At times I am just plain irritating. I am certain there is not a single person in relationship with me that has not been hurt or disappointed at some point. But the most honest(and coincidentally the most fragile)parts of my heart echo the words of that song: "If you don't find the love you want, if I have acted ungracefully, I don't want to see you go, I never meant to make you want to leave". In humility, can we ask one another for sincerity and honesty, but most of all the grace of Jesus? In love, can we give one another sincerity and honesty and the grace of Jesus? So that we can learn and love one another better next time?
Loving is some of the hardest work we will ever do, but it is a pleasing sacrifice to Him.